Home / Opinion / Colonial Legacy and Power Structure in Pakistani Society

Colonial Legacy and Power Structure in Pakistani Society

Muhammad Ijaz

In 16th century, European colonizers started their colonial politics with the slogan of “White Man Burden Theory”. The consequences of that white man burden theory came in the form of colonialism which became known as multipolar politics. The order of this world power politics was observed in the form of colonies. European colonial masters grab the third world nations in the form of three types of colonies. First one was that where they settled themselves along with the natives such as in South Africa, North America, Australia and New Zee Land etc. In second form of colonies, they got the benefits in the form of trade, mineral and natural resources, raw material for their industry and capital through imposing the taxes, lagan and penalties of colonial rulers over natives. India is the best example of such type of colony of Great Britain where British masters got all these type of benefits. According to native Indian Historians, India was golden sparrow for the colonial masters to grab the Indian Territory and people. With this perspective, Dr. ShashiTharoor gave the facts and figures orally in Oxford Union’s speech at Oxford University and logically explained this colonial phenomenon in his book “An Era of Darkness”. Third type of colony was made by the European Colonial masters from where they got “man power” for their industry in the form of slavery. For this purpose, the African nations and societies were used by the Europeans.

Being a student of history, everyone can observe a similar approach of colonial master that was adopted by every colonial master to defeat mentally which was “sense of superiority and inferiority”. After defeating the nations, all colonial masters gave a concept of inferiority to defeated nations with the perspective of civilizations, their education, language and culture and considered them as a cheap, mean, dull and unaware people. Masters considered themselves as a superior people in the field of education and civilizations. While in fact, all the development and modernity of defeated native societies and nations destroyed intentionally by the masters due to two major reasons. Firstlythey were not at this stage where they accept the defeated people’s superiority in the above mentioned fields and secondly they wanted to replace that one into their own economic benefit. Such as they did in India where Indian textile industry in Bengal and in southern part, destroyed. At the eve of colonial invading, in spite of downfall of Mughal rule, India was sharing almost 27% of world trade while British masters came here that figure of 27%shrank to 4% which was shared by just mother state of India. So, like other colonies, Indians were also considered as inferior people as compared to masters in every field of life like in civilizations, education, agriculture, Industry, transportation, irrigation, communications and health. All the justifications of Ibn-e-Batuta regarding our education, Al-Bairuni regarding civilization and force of attraction “Indian Economy” for invaders became useless because colonial masters remained successful to prove that Indians were inferior with the support of elite class of India which were in-fact colonial master made and imposed over natives after 1857.

Karl Marx gave the concept of social classes on economic base to his followers. According to him, every society has three classes and nine sub-classes. First one is elite which is always remained less than one percent of the society. Second one is middle class and third one is lower class. In capitalistic society, rule, power and money isalways enjoyed by elite while rest of both are going to serve the elite one. In case of Indian society, colonial history tells us about its construction that how colonial master redesign it for his own interest. To analyze the causes of war of independence, colonial master found two basic social concerns first one was “King of India” whose existence stirred the Indian Nationalism against the colonial ruler in this wave of patriotism and second one was the “elite class” of India who supported war of independence economically and socially. Therefore, colonial masters abolished the symbolic kingship of India and Mughal designed elite class as well. They redesigned Indian society after winning the war of Independence by snatching the rights of Indian land from the Mughal Elite and middle class. The Indian land was the major difference among Indian classes of society.Colonial Masters snatched the rights of claim of natives over the land where they were living. Through this way everyone was equal with the perspective of classes of Karl Marx. Now, masters redistributed the land among natives with their own perspective that was just “pro-colonial” approach. Finally, the people who were chosen by the rulers, they got land unlimited and the merit to own the land was just one; how much they were well-wishers of colonial rulers. Without any doubt the new class of land-lords, feudal lords, nawabs and the men of fiefdom emerged on the base of pro-colonial and anti-nationalistic sentiments and thoughts. While in lower class of colonial Indian society, there were two types of people, ones were those who have no any concept of living standards and they were mentally serving people, and second one which were forcefully kept at this level due to their nationalistic approach. Now the right time came for masters to give their thoughts, doctrines and ideologies through new elite class to the Indian society. The hammer of “sense of superiority” of colonial master rightly hit on the head of natives and inserted a new idea of “sense of inferiority” to the natives. Consequently with the help of our new colonial made nawabs, landlords and feudal lords, colonial masters remained successful to prove the rest of Indians are inferior as compared to masters, rulers, landlords, feudal lords and all chosen people whether they were chosen from the garrison state, marshal race and politically Brahmin class. These colonial chosen people have the right to rule over us. Rest of all were considered as inferior with the perspective of rule, power and with the status of citizenship and known mostly as “bloody civilians”.

Even today in Pakistan, those are superior who has the education from ex-colonial institutes or educated from European educational industry, have the lands, assets and can grab the corridor of power in the form of politics, bureaucracy, industry and the last one is religious along with colonial mindset. Therefore we can observe all the channels of power; rule, money and dealings related to power indicate the address of ex-mother land. The social products of colonial mind set have edge of ex-colonial master’s sense of superiority in different form like bank-balance at ex-mother land, assets, next off-Springs’s education, retired life and other enjoyable activities are over there as compared to native land. Frantz Fanon truly said that no-nation can enjoy her independence without reconstruction of social status of colonial masters. He wrote that if you want to enjoy your independence then you should redesign the colonial social structure where flow of money should be from elite to poor while in our beloved state; flow of money is from poor to elite since our birth till today in each and every period of rule. After 70 years of independence still we have same colonial social structure with same mode of ruling with just single difference that instead of colonial master now we are the slave of their representative class which has same intentions and goals with same results. If we want to enjoy our independence then we have to change our social mind-set, our rulers have to take decision and invert the flow of money from elite to lower class and construct the approach of nationalism rather than still we are serving new form of colonial approach with flattering attitude and sense of inferiority. We should give our nation a sense of superiority with well-defined doctrine that should be based on local requirements not with “white mask and black skin” need.


Check Also

Ambassador of Kashmir and need for a course correction

Dr. Syed Nazir Gilani, Prime Minister of Pakistan keeps enormous confidence and holds on to …